Western media is reporting that organizers of the 2nd Gaza Flotilla have said that the coalition will send some 15 ships with 1500 people in an attempt to break Israel’s blockade of Gaza. According to an AP report:
ISTANBUL — Pro-Palestinian activists say a planned convoy of aid ships to the Gaza Strip will be twice as big as a similar flotilla that was raided a year ago by Israeli forces, leaving nine people dead on a Turkish boat. Organizers say they hope to depart around the May 31 anniversary of the fatal raid, but say it could happen later than that. Huseyin Oruc, a spokesman for an Islamic aid group in Turkey, said Tuesday that an international coalition of 22 non-governmental organizations plans to send 15 ships with a total of 1,500 people. The goal is to break Israel’s blockade of Gaza. Israel says any attempt to reach Gaza by sea is aimed at provoking violence.”
A CBN report adds that the departure date for the flotilla has been postponed until after the June 12 Turkish elections and that organizers have had problems raising fund and finding ships:
JERUSALEM, Israel – Organizers of a multi-vessel flotilla planning to set sail on the anniversary of last year’s confrontation off the Israeli coast have postponed the event to mid-June. Still, Israeli appeals to Turkey to intervene in the plan have fallen on deaf ears. Last year, the Turkish “humanitarian” organization, IHH, recruited about 40 activists to travel on the flotilla’s flagship, Mavi Marmara. This year the group claims to have between 100 and 150 activists willing to take part in another attempt to breach the Israeli naval blockade of the Gaza Strip. IHH has known ties to Islamic terror groups, including Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood. According to the group, this year’s event has been postponed to avoid anything that might negatively impact voters in Turkey’s parliamentary elections on June 12. Recent media reports also indicated that some activists have decided not to participate in the flotilla, Ynet news reported. According to the report, organizers have also had problems raising funds and finding ship owners willing to lend their vessels to the event.
The Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs (JCPA) has recently published an almost hundred page report titled “Turkey, the Global Muslim Brotherhood, and the Gaza Flotilla” which provides extensive background on the years leading up to the 1st Gaza Flotilla. The JCPA report abstract states:
There is strong evidence for Turkish governmental involvement in the Gaza flotilla incident, with Turkish government support channeled through the Turkish Muslim Brotherhood network. Since 2006, Turkey has become a new center for the Global Muslim Brotherhood. The IHH was not acting alone but rather was an integral part of a Turkish Muslim Brotherhood network.
With respect to the Global Muslim Brotherhood, report’s second conclusion states:
The Gaza flotilla incident brought into sharp focus an even more significant long- term development: the growing relationship between the Erdogan government and the Global Muslim Brotherhood, which has given rise to some of the most notorious Islamist terrorist groups – from al-Qaeda to Hamas. Since 2006, Turkey has become a new center for the Global Muslim Brotherhood, while the Hamas regime in the Gaza Strip acted as the main axis for this activity.